“Then The King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world’ (Matt. 25:34). “The King will answer to them, ‘Truly, I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it unto Me.’ (Matt. 25:40). (read verses 34-46).
Hey Gang: When God called me and my family to leave our home, jobs, California friends and move to Michigan and become an unemployed director of a not-yet- started Boys Home, I think I learned how Abraham must have felt when God said, pack it and follow My leading. God sold our house, brought our income tax return back in two weeks (which was unheard of in that day) and removed any excuse I might have had for not following His lead. So we packed all of our worldly possessions in a van and pickup truck and headed East. A trip I will share with you in the coming days.
For those of you who have availed yourselves of the Whatshappeningman Blog I refer to the ‘When All of These Things Happen, Look Up!’ series. I believe most would suggest that it was not a heart uplifting series- unless you disciplined yourself to keep it plugged into the right context – the King is rapidly preparing the way for His coming again!
So when I dotted the last “I” I asked the Lord to put His words into my heart and mind that lead us to follow Paul’s advice of 2 Thessalonians when he wrote, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus and by no means quench the Spirit and do not despise prophetic utterances.” And most of all ‘Examine all things carefully and hold fast to that which is good and abstain from every form of evil’ (2 Thess. 5:16-22). (Gramps rendition)
I love Paul’s words in Philippians when he said, “For I am confident of this very thing that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil.1:6). Is that your prayer this morning? It certainly is mine. In chapter 3:12 Paul gives me hope for all the stupid things I have done and continue to do in my life when he wrote, “Not that I have already obtained it or have already became perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus”.
But this morning the verse that is ringing in my heart and mind is “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice. Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near!”. Praise the Lord that even in these dark days when everything that can be shaken is being shaken “the Lord is near!” “And we can have the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:7). And I believe that the seeds of that peace comes to life when we “rejoice in the Lord always”.
Kermit is not a name that will reach the top ten on the list of popular names that moms and dads will name their newborns; but, it has served me well in the occupation into which God led me. If my name was one of the more common names, like John or Matthew, the kids I worked with would soon forget it. Years ago, after retiring from the Village I was walking through the Chicago Airport when I heard my name called out. It was a young man who has passed through my life years before.
And, if you would ask that young man who Kermit was in his life, he would say he was a “seed planter”. Are you a seed planter? When I would ask the boys if they were seed planters, most would say “no”, but when I explained that their attitude the morning and their attitude at the dinner table were times when they were in a constant seed planting mode – positive or negative.
This epistle could turn into a book, so let me cut to the chase of what I believe God laid on my heart for you this morning. When we stand before God and give an account of what we did with His Son, Jesus, we will be judged by our fruits. (Matt. 7:16). Read again the Scripture of the morning and note who Jesus said would inherit the Kingdom. Who was Jesus referring to? The hungry. The thirsty. The stranger. The naked. The one in prison. I do not believe the list is all conclusive but includes all who are down and out and in need of a helping hand. Perhaps it is your next door neighbor.
I close this epistle with what I adopted as my creed many years ago. It contains a challenge and a blessing, if we accept the challenge. It is found in Luke 6:38 “Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure – pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure, It will be measured to you in return”. In Malachi, Jesus/God said, “Now test Me in this! (Mal.3:10).